United Houma Nation

Blog

30 Mar

BACK TO TRADITIONAL LIVING: Community Garden Initiative Begins

Posted by United Houma Nation on Sunday, March 30, 2014

Previous generations didn't have to fight diabetes, heart disease, strokes and other ailments because they ate what Mother Earth provided.  Within the last 30 years our people have seen a significant decline in getting away from traditional lifestyles and in turn our people are also seeing alarming rates of chronic health problems.  The diabetes rate alone has grown to nearly 1 in 4 tribal citizens, which is too much.
It is time to return back to the natural way of fighting illness and disease.  The United Houma Nation Diabetes Coalition is taking the first step back to this tradition by securing funding to assist with piloting a community garden in Montegut.  Tribal citzens of all ages and all communities are able to participate.  There will be no cost to participate.  A community garden offers the following health benefits:
  • Gardening is exercise and will help individuals with living healthier through physical activity
  • The cost savings of harvesting your own fresh fruits and vegetables reducing the need to buy them at the grocery store
  • The health benefit of having access to more fresh fruit and vegetables
What is a community garden?  It is the opportunity to share gardening resources (tools, equipment, seeds, etc.) and work side-by-side with your friends and family in planting, maintaining and harvesting year round.  A community garden allows people to pool their efforts and share responsibilities to reduce the frustration with not having as much time or energy as you think you need to maintain a garden independently or are a first time gardener needing help.  In a tribal setting, the additional benefit is donating a portion of the garden's harvest to tribal elders who are on fixed incomes and are physically unable to maintain their own gardens.  The Montegut garden will also serve as a place for our young people to be mentored by tribal elders who's experience and knowledge of traditional planting is invaluable.  
The initial meeting of interested individuals and families will be:
When:  (Change) Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Where:  Montegut Tribal Center
1739 Hwy. 55
Montegut, Louisiana
Time:  2:00 pm
We look forward to seeing not only our elders, but also other adults and youth as we move away from processed foods and back to the bounty that sustained our ancestors.  For more information, please contact Onita Harris at onita.harris@unitedhoumanation.org or (985)223-3093.